Consumer satisfaction with food manufacturing companies is up, according to the latest American Customer Satisfaction Index report. This is, in part, because companies have worked to satisfy consumer demands for healthier products.
David VanAmburg, ACSI managing director said in a press release: “A growing demand for healthier foods has reshuffled the playing field for grocery brands. In 2018, we saw the sales of plant-based foods grow by 20%, and one in 10 consumers have tried a gluten-free diet. These aren’t fads; customers want to adhere to a healthier lifestyle and they’re more satisfied with brands that offer those options.”
Most companies on the list saw their ratings either increase or stay the same. Hershey, which is in the process of simplifying its ingredients lists and removing artificial flavors, hung onto the top spot with a score of 85% (out of 100). But only barely. Dole climbed 4% to 85%, thanks to its emphasis on healthy snacks and its recent salad packaging redesign.
General Mills, Mars, Campbell Soup, and Tyson also saw their ratings increase. In fact, the only major company to see its rating slip was Conagra.
In the beverage categories, soft drink manufacturers didn’t fare nearly as well, as consumers continued to abandon sugary beverages. Overall, satisfaction with soft drinks slipped 2.4%, dragged down by Coca-Cola (-5%) and PepsiCo (-6%). On the other hand, consumers are very happy with breweries — the category gained 1.2% for an all-time high score of 85, even as satisfaction with Molson Coors plummeted 4%.
Overall, the survey results reaffirm what we already know: that consumers want healthier options and will reward the brands that provide them.